September 16, 2004

Bacon and Books

I'm a vegetarian. There. I said it. But I want it to be known that I'm not one of those freaky, organic-nut-only-eating vegetarian. My wife (who's also one) and I eat very well, thank you very much.

The one thing, really the only thing, I miss is bacon. I love the smell of bacon. I love bacon that's really crispy. I love the salty taste of bacon. I care not that its pig ass. To me, bacon is just little slices of crispy heaven. Fatty heaven, but heaven nonetheless. Which is why every day is a battle.

You see, there's a deli in the basement of the building in which I work. Starting around 6:30 in the morning, they start frying bacon to prepare for the morning breakfast rush. When I walk in from the parking garage? Bacon. When I get into an elevator? Bacon. If I take the stairs? Bacon. You just can't escape the heavenly smell of frying bacon in this place. Bastards.

One day a couple of years ago, I really wanted to cave. So I bought fake bacon. Where real bacon can be considered heaven-sent, I'd like to warn you that fake bacon is clearly cut from the flanks of the devil's ass. It smelled almost like bacon but not quite. Kinda like when the pods started taking over people in the Invasion of the Body Snatchers - it looks like Frank, sounds like Frank, but isn't quite Frank. We worked for a week to get the smell out of our house. And the taste? Lets not go there, okay? The cats wouldn't even touch it.

Despite my vegetarianism, I'm resigned to forever loving bacon. Like a theme from Shakespeare (A Mid Summer Night's Bacon? Taming of the Bacon? Bacon III?) it is a love that shall go unrequited.

In other news: The book club is now open for business. Yes, all of you who expressed interest a month ago should have received an email last night. Please go register! Weren't on the email distribution list but interested in joining? Go register - its open to all! Voting for the October 2004 book has begun!

Posted by Chris at September 16, 2004 8:07 AM

I admit that bacon would be a downfall for me too.. I would also kill from time to time for a cheeseburger. Other than that, I probably could do the vegetarian thing.

Posted by: debby at September 16, 2004 8:23 AM

*EVERY* vegetarian I know still craves bacon :)

Posted by: HG at September 16, 2004 8:25 AM

i've decided that when i die, i want to be rolled in bacon and deep fried in bacon fat. it's that good.

Posted by: monique at September 16, 2004 8:46 AM

I tried being a vegetarian. . .and failed miserably. I just can't hang when it comes to food that tastes like cardboard. So I can imagine what fake bacon tastes like and that's reason enough to get the real deal.

Posted by: Colby at September 16, 2004 9:24 AM

um, what's wrong with organic???

and yes, i too crave the bacon. you need to try some other brand of fake bacon because there are some damn good ones out there.

Posted by: laura at September 16, 2004 9:30 AM

I first tried to give up bacon and pork chops when I watched those cute movies "Babe" and then "Babe. Pig In the City." I was able to stick with my refusal to eat anything that could be as cute as that piggie in those movies...but when I got pregnant with my wee one, it went down hill from there and I'm back to eating bacon very regularly. Bacon, Ding Dongs and def weak spots. I've tried the fake bacon and turkey bacon ass well. That was the grossest sh*t I've ever tastest in my life. :)

Posted by: groovebunny at September 16, 2004 9:41 AM

I'm also a vegetarian and sometimes crave meat. I must admit that about a year ago I was having breakfast with a friend (who knows my huge distaste for animal flesh) and there, sitting on her plate all innocent and waiting to be eaten was a crispy piece of bacon. I had to have it. I asked her if I could try a piece of the bacon and she gladly gave it to me. I tell you, it was so good! Once in a while I just need to have a bite (even though it still grosses me out to eat chicken off the bone--eeeeww)!

Posted by: Missy at September 16, 2004 10:25 AM

I'm a not-so-strict vegetarian. A non-meat eater, really. I still find myself eating things like Mentos or Marshmallows from time to time without even realizing it (animal bi-products), so I'm not very good at it.
But every time I make bacon for my husband and daughter I want to eat the whole pan full! So I totally empathize!

Posted by: RockStar Mommy at September 16, 2004 10:43 AM

If you ever read FHM (instead of looking at the heavily airbrushed pictures), they have (had?) a little thing in there comparing popular foods to God's Perfect Food (that would be bacon). Like, a Big Mac was equal to something like 12.5 strips of bacon.

Bacon is forevermore referred to as God's Perfect Food in our house. Nothing wakes me up like the smell of bacon and/or coffee.

Posted by: Amy at September 16, 2004 10:54 AM

I think I could go without bacon. Chicken! Now that's a totally different story!

Posted by: JustAgirl at September 16, 2004 11:15 AM

What really interests me is why you are a vegetarian. Health? Aesthetics? Empathy for our friends with faces? I usually eat meat 1 night/week but only because meat generally grosses me out. However, I'm not too fond of the texture of legumes (that are necessary to replace the missing protein) so I exist on carbs. Yeah, I'm a carb sinner. So shoot me.

Posted by: Laura B. at September 16, 2004 11:31 AM

Uhhh ... I have a major love of bacon myself!

Really quite obsessive actually. I eat between one and two pounds a week. Ummm ... but only on the weekends!

Yeah. A big greasy pile of bacon for your Saturday morning endulgance.

Were there time to make it during the week I would be dead.

Posted by: Kenn at September 16, 2004 12:08 PM

I'd have to agree with one of the other posters -- some of the fake bacon is really good. Have you tried different kinds? It seems like every year they improve on the old products.

Posted by: Monica at September 16, 2004 12:09 PM

Your post reminded me of the Beggin' Strips commercial: "BaconBaconBaconBaconBacon....I smell Bacon..."! What a hoot! Loooove me some bacon too!

Posted by: Sue at September 16, 2004 12:29 PM

Funny you should mention bacon, I was just getting ready to fry some up. I'll have one extra crispy for you!

Posted by: Jeff A at September 16, 2004 12:45 PM

Rarely do I ever send anything back when I'm at a restaurant, but with bacon I can make an exception. My pork product must be crispy!

Why are you doing this to yourself, Chris? Talking about bacon isn't going to help the craving go away.

Posted by: bmh at September 16, 2004 12:52 PM

I believe the theme to which you're referring is best reflected in 'The Taming of the Bacon,' or perhaps 'Hamlet, Prince of Bacon'. We all know why Ophelia really had that thing for Hamlet, don't we?

har har... gotta love bad Shakespeare jokes.

Posted by: Heather at September 16, 2004 1:36 PM

A friend of mine wasn't so much a vegetarian as she was a non-mammalarian. She'd still eat poultry and fish. She explained it to me as "nothing with four legs".

Posted by: Heather at September 16, 2004 2:08 PM

Lisa Loeb calls herself a baco-vegetarian.

Posted by: Jenny at September 16, 2004 2:16 PM

Now... are you vegetarian for strict reasons, or is it just a lifestyle choice? Because, honestly, I'd think you could have a bite to satisfy the craving. Just one.

That's if you can stop at one. :)

Posted by: PinkStiletto at September 16, 2004 2:23 PM

I'm almost a vegetarian. That's a lot easier. I almost never fix meat, and when it's put in front of me, I eat very little. I've always referred to myself as a "vetetarian who eats meat"

Posted by: cassie-b at September 16, 2004 4:09 PM

Am I the only one who likes soft floppy bacon? Everybody keeps mentioning crunchy bacon but that just doesn't do it for me... Maybe I am just gross.

Posted by: supine at September 16, 2004 4:15 PM

If I were a marketer of fake bacon (which I am not), I'd call it "Fake-On." Heh.

I gave up hamburger in February (after reading "Fast Food Nation") and sometimes I'll be at a restaraunt watching my husband eat a cheeseburger and it is oh-so-hard on my sense of food morality.

Posted by: Casey at September 16, 2004 4:27 PM

Do you know what totally gets me? The smell of BBQ, which is often near impossible to avoid here in my little neighborhood of Santa Barbara. I haven't eaten meat in 15 years, but sometimes I think I may die when I smell those little roasting chickens. And word on the fake bacon. It is not okay. Ever. But the fake sausage patties? Oh yes.

Posted by: Heather at September 16, 2004 4:29 PM

No judgment here, but if you like things like bacon, why are you a vegetarian? Health reasons? Or moral/ethical ones?

Posted by: DeAnn at September 16, 2004 4:54 PM

i firmly believe that first thing Jesus did after he rose from the dead was order a bacon cheeseburger.

Seriously. Bacon is something I can't do without.

Posted by: samantha at September 16, 2004 7:48 PM

Every had pig candy? Bacon mushed and coated in dark brown sugar baked in a 400 degree oven until the sugar melts and gets all bubbly. MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM. Makes the arteries harden just thinking about it!

Posted by: Debra at September 16, 2004 10:29 PM

See, now I worked as a waitress at Bennigan's waaaaaay back in the day, and Sunday mornings was when the cooks would fry up the bacon for the weeks. Maybe it was the quality of bacon they used, but I swear to GOD, the smell of it cooking makes we want to hurl in a wicked bad way. Love to eat it (crispy, natch) but oof ...

Posted by: Broad at September 16, 2004 10:51 PM

Is it just wrong of me if I ask, "What's shakin', bacon?"

Posted by: Joe at September 16, 2004 11:58 PM

Good morning Chris !!!
As I type I have a plate of bacon and eggs, hahahahaha. Not pea meal or back bacon, but plain ole bacon. Ok heres the deal Its a one time offer !!!! win me that CD compilation, make me the winner or what ever it is you have to do to convince your readers that I'm the winner, and I'll send you some nice juicy REAL Canadian back bacon, with maple syrop. And yes the both go great togethor!!!

Posted by: shaners at September 17, 2004 7:23 AM